UK-based digital therapy company Ieso announced a $ 53 million series B round on Tuesday. The next step is to raise funds for the company to move in a new direction.

In other words, AI is trained in thousands of hours of real-life treatment that can provide personalized sessions.

ieso has been around for ten years, and has been providing text-only medical services (in conjunction with human therapists) through the UK National Health Service. So far, the company has provided text-based treatment to 80,000 patients – although 6,000 are receiving active therapy, Nigel Pitchford, ieso CEO, told Tech Crunch. This is a total of 460,000 hours of treatment so far.

“Tonight we offer some 400-hour treatments online,” Pichford said.

This latest round of funding is led by MorningSide, with the participation of Sony Innovation Fund. It also includes existing investors IP Group, Multon Ventures and Ananda Impact Ventures

In the end, Ieso wants to move from a system based on a human therapist to a more independent system. The idea of ​​AI-based conversational therapy is not exactly different here (we have covered it. Other companies Follow this) But the information Later IIso’s approach is seen by the company as a secret inauguration.

Eso’s “disproportionate benefit” is a ten-year real-life textbook between patients and therapists, which Pichford calls a “copy of care.” That is the data collection. Paired Instant information on patient clinical outcomes, the company is collecting alongside those copies.

“Ieso has built one of the most amazing data assets I have ever seen in space,” said MorningSide investment partner Stephen Bruce. One of the features that I found to be very attractive as an investor is the ieso feature, which he described as “unprecedented”.

This data set is used to monitor how certain medical discourses or techniques relate (or do not relate to patient improvement). And, ieso has some evidence to support that information. For example, the company published A piece of paper 2019 JAMA Psychiatry Analyzing 90,000 hours of treatment. The paper confirms that therapeutic aspects, such as “planning for the future” or some cognitive behavioral therapy, are associated with better patient outcomes.

According to Andy Blackford, the company’s team science and strategy officer, 28 minutes of each hour of treatment included discussions or exercises that “directly” affected the patient’s outcome.

Perhaps on the contrary, the paper is negatively correlated with the patient outcomes of therapeutic compassion – although other studies have suggested clients. They have better results When they feel that their medical professionals are helping them. Blackford interpreted the discovery of compassion as evidence that compassion must be used in conjunction with other medical techniques.

Finally, Pichford sees this data collection and analysis as similar to what was done there Jema Paper is a roadmap for how AI-based therapists are trained and personalized.

“So, basically, we are studying what the best therapists are doing at a high level, and by rebuilding that it can reach people who can’t access human psychology, which is a big problem around the world,” he said.

Even with this data set, ieso seems to be working in an increasingly crowded space. Funding for mental health startups is expected to reach $ 3 billion by 2021. That is, there are many minds that are currently focusing on issues related to traditional medicine.

Bruce Esson recognizes that at least one of the few mental health companies in the world can use their own database to refer to real-world health outcomes.

“We believe there is a unique combination of ISO digital products built on our real-world data and their ability to test these products on a current user basis,” he said. “At the end of the day, there will be products that will stay in space Can have a measurable impact on both individual health and social outcomes.

Blackford knows how crowded this space is – in fact, it sees it as a problem for users. These apps, ieso management figures, are often designed for patients with self-help, comprehension, or less serious mental health examinations.

Although Iso can treat people with advanced mental health problems, the company focuses on moderate to severe diagnoses. It is not a “health solution” to use the words – and can be used by groups that need more serious care.

This means that defenses against self-harm must be particularly strong. Blackford claims to be one of the largest mental health providers in the UK and has developed a risk-based treatment protocol over a decade. The company plans to incorporate those programs into its own products in the future.

Currently, Blackford does not expect a more stringent regulatory approach as it seeks to withstand high levels of mental health screening.

“The good thing is that there are preconditions and conditions that we have to deal with when it comes to marketing.

Blackford argues that the large amount of data already collected by the company allows it to gather insights about efficiency and safety from “often faster” expectations than in standard clinical trials.

In the future, ieso plans to use this round to build its AI-based medical arm, and show its presence in the US. The group is expected to grow to 200 next year, which will put pressure on the market in the next two years.